Science teachers from across the state took time to honor their own during the Colorado Science Conference, held Nov. 18 at the Denver Merchandise Mart. Jennifer Christianson (second from right above), a teacher at Ponderosa Elementary, was recognized as one of two Colorado finalists for the 2016 Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST).
Christianson teaches full-day kindergarten to a diverse class of five- and six-year-olds. Her students speak a wide range of languages, including Arabic, Mandinka, Russian, Somali and Twi. (Visit Christianson in her classroom here.) She is also a district trainer in FOSS (Full Options Science Systems), the Cherry Creek School District’s science curriculum.
The Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching is presented annually to outstanding K-12 science and mathematics teachers from across the country. National winners will be selected next year by a panel of distinguished scientists, mathematicians and educators. They will be invited to an awards ceremony in Washington D.C. and will receive a $10,000 award from the National Science Foundation to be used at their discretion.
Since 1983, more than 4,400 teachers have been recognized with the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching for their contributions in the classroom and to their profession. Smoky Hill High School science teacher Mark Paricio was a Presidential Award recipient in 2015.